Personal Technology: Spellbinding

Equip your office or home with a computer created by VoodooPC, and some might regard it as evidence of a midlife crisis. With chassis painted in vibrant colors like Imola pearl orange or Laguna Seca blue and such visceral monikers as Fury and Envy, Voodoos are clearly intended for the video game–playing set. However, even […]

FrontRunners: Get with the Program

The latest controller in the Pronto family from Philips (www.pronto.philips.com) controls as many as 13 household systems—including A/V components as well as a home’s thermostat and security system—from its touchscreen, but the feature that sets the iPronto apart from the field is its personal electronic program guide. The integrated EPG updates itself from the Internet […]

FrontRunners: Write On

Despite the immediate success of the 6108, the world’s only mobile phone with handwriting recognition, which debuted in Asia earlier this year, Nokia (www.nokia-asia.com) maintains that it does not intend to release the phone in North America or Europe. These plans may change, however, once Western travelers discover what they are missing. With the 6108, […]

The Best of the Best 2003: Home Automation – Crestron MP2E

The true measuring stick of a home automation system is the controller—not the visible touchpanels or keypads. “The controller is the mind, heart, brain, and soul of a home automation system,” says Anson Fogel, chief technology officer of ESC, an electronics integration company in Aspen, Colo. “The user interfaces are nothing without it. They are […]

Personal Technology: Seeing Stars

For anyone who has considered adding astronomy to his or her list of hobbies, now is as good a time as ever to take the first step. Late this summer, Mars will pass closer to Earth than at any time during the past 73,000 years, but even this rare event will not match the nightly […]

Family: Ethical Will Power

Bequeathing wealth and valuables to children is one matter, but conferring values is quite another challenge. Large sums of money and numerous assets in a family estate can easily obscure what many of the people who create wealth consider far more important: handing down their guiding principles, ideals, and beliefs. Such a problem faced the […]

Wealth Management: It’s OK to Say No

Patricia Poitras does not feel guilty anymore. When charities approach her foundation for donations, she bases her response on two simple yes-or-no questions. If the answers are no, Poitras graciously declines the request without any pangs of remorse or second-guessing her conscience. She did not always follow this strategy, though. About 20 years ago, she […]

Home Electronics: Chip Off the Old Block

Home-Projector Technology continues to evolve, which is good news for consumers longing for improved performance and simplified installation and operation. It is especially welcome for home theater owners who prefer small, easy-to-operate DLP projectors rather than the larger, difficult-to-maintain CRTs. A number of compact front-projection units featuring the new HD2 processing chip have recently arrived […]

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